Wait a minute. I hear murmurs and rumblings in the crowd. Some of you have been following SDM&M for a long time and remember me telling you last year that the Shady Dell house was 87 years old. Guess what? New information has been uncovered since then to suggest that the Dell was actually built in 1912 or 1913 rather than in 1924 as was originally thought! I'll have more details on this exciting development
in a new series starting soon!
Knowing that M'Lady Shady is very close to the century mark makes today's unveiling all the more exciting!
At this time I am delighted to welcome back my dear friend Toni Deroche, current owner
of the Shady Dell.
* Dell owner
* Violet Hill
Toni, who doubles as our intrepid SDMM reporter, Violet Hill Bureau Chief and Senior New Dellie Correspondent, has just returned from the front lines where she snapped copious pictures of the completed work. Toni is ready to take us inside for an exclusive sneak peek at the brand new Dell. Toni, the original Dell rats are simply not going to believe their eyes when they behold the amazing transformation
of their beloved Lady D!
That's right, Shady!
Even I can't believe
how different the
Dell looks now
compared with the
way it looked a few
years ago when we
Evidence of the Dell's metamorphosis over the last two
years can be seen before we even enter the house.
The latest exterior shots show the Dell sporting a new roof,
new paint job, bright, clean, pressure washed bricks and
three reconstructed porches.
The 3+ acre property was graded and tons of unwanted
trees, bushes and ivy vines were removed.
If you'll follow me I can't wait to show you all the
surprises that await you on the inside!
Ladies and gentlemen, step right this way and meet
the brand new Shady Dell!
The first room I'd like you to see is the new breakfast nook.
As many of you recall this front room was once lined with
diner style restaurant booths. It was here that Dell rats of
the 50s and 60s sat and munched on burgers and fries,
drank Cokes and shakes, savored CMP's and listened to
Helen's doo-wop jukebox. The modern breakfast nook
boasts one the original lights left at the Dell, the red one
above the table. I should also mention that the original
curtains were also left in place. Thank goodness they
cleaned up nicely!
Let's move a little closer to the table because it looks like
the daily newspaper has arrived.
Well, what do you know? This is not just any newspaper.
It's a special insert devoted to the Dell in its heyday!
This collectible edition contains rare pictures of Dell rats
dancing in the barn, the photos that were first published
right here on Shady's blog!
As we take one more look at the beautiful breakfast nook
I would like to mention that new drywall was installed on
walls and ceilings throughout the house along with fresh
coats of paint.
Much of the house was painted as you see above, a
warm butter yellow with off white trim. Incidentally,
all of the furniture and accessories on display as we
tour the Dell are included with the sale of the house!
Now if you'll come with me through the doorway on
the left we'll explore a wing of the house that was
off limits to Dell rats of old.
This front room on the other side of the house was once
part of John and Helen Ettline's large living room. We
decided to add a wall and divide it into two smaller rooms.
This room could now be used as a small living room, den
The other section of the Ettlines' old living room has now
become a dining room.
Until now there was no dining room on the Dell's main floor.
We remedied that by creating this charming space where
natural light streams in through bay windows overlooking
Near the center of the picture above you will see a
passageway leading to a room on the other side of
the house. If you look closely you will also see
something hanging on the wall. Curious? That room
is our next destination so let's make our way over.
Click to enlarge and you'll see a collage of memories
which includes rare pictures of the Dell past and present
along with clippings from newspaper articles written
about the legendary hangout in recent years.
The collage, created in honor of original Dell rats, hangs
in the great room which once contained the snack bar.
It's hard to believe
we're looking at
the same space
the counter all
treats to feed
the hungry horde.
As you can see below we selected an eye pleasing shade
of green paint for the new great room. We used this same
color in the master bedroom on the second floor.
We also added a new ceiling fan and recessed lighting.
The large closet on the right is the spot where the Dell's
pinball machine was located. We added the closet to a
wall that housed many old fuse boxes.
They say home is where you hang your hat.
The new Dell is a place where you can also hang your
Baracuta and your Jack Purcells, two essentials of the
official Dell rat uniform.
As we prepare to leave the great room I'd like to add that
the entire first floor of the house received new hardwood
flooring. The house has newly installed 2-zone heating and
A/C, new plumbing and insulation and new electric wiring.
Our next stop, the Dell's modern kitchen straight ahead!
Pictures taken from
the same spot two
years apart reveal
made to this and
Before the renovation started a residential kitchen did not
even exist on the first floor. We had to start from scratch.
We chose to locate
the kitchen in the
old billiard room
because it has the
longest, most usable
wall - uninterrupted
by windows and doors.
The Dell's modern kitchen includes all new stainless steel
appliances, island with granite counter top and glass/stone
The light fixture is sterling silver with a patina that gives
it an antique look. It is one of only two new lights.
Most of the ceiling lights and chandeliers are real
antiques from the 1920's thru 40's.
Here's another picture of the great room taken from the
kitchen. Behind the great room at the rear of the house
are a new laundry room and freshly tiled half bath.
Now that we've seen the Dell's main floor, let's go upstairs!
The second floor features 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths.
We are standing in the master bedroom which was created
by combining an existing bedroom with another one that
the Ettlines turned into a dining room. We removed a wall
that divided the rooms to create one large master suite
complete with sitting room. As you can see it is painted
the same soothing shade of green that was used in the
great room downstairs.
Panning to the left we get a nice view of the sitting room
which features another set of bay windows. These panes
are among the 38 new windows installed at the Dell.
I'd also like to point out that new carpeting was installed
throughtout the second and third floors.
As a result of the
renovation the Dell
now has three new
The largest and
is the L-shaped
which flows thru
the master suite
in the space
by the second
Another view of the spacious master bath shows that it
contains a large soaking tub and shower.
The master bathroom also includes a large walk in closet.
Behind the bathroom is another large closet with carpeted
floor, a great place to store extra linens, towels, etc.
The master bath has double sink with granite surrounds.
At the entrance on the left there's room enough to keep
a vanity/makeup table and stool. That's what I would do!
This cozy spot is the other second floor bathroom.
It was the only bath on this floor until we created the
master suite. We dressed it up with new fixtures, tile,
and custom "Dell" towels.
Now let's proceed to the Dell's awesome third floor!
As we reach the top of the stairs and arrive on the third
floor the first thing we see is a large walk-in closet that
has its own window. It offers only a slight hint of what
you'll encounter here. About face!.....Forward march!
You can tell in an instant that this is no ordinary attic.
No cramped quarters here. The Dell's third floor is
cavernous and features a cathedral ceiling. No need
to endure 100 degree summer heat or freezing winter
cold. The entire floor has been remodeled and is fully
heated and air conditioned. The third floor of the Dell
offers real, honest to goodness, bonus living space!
New dry wall was installed up here along with new paint
and new carpeting. Window seats extend down both sides
of the wide open chamber.
Windows allow sunshine in during the day. At night you
can turn on recessed lights which dot the vaulted ceiling.
Gobs of available square footage will have your mind
reeling with ideas for how to use this sky parlor.
A huge 4th bedroom perhaps? An office? A playroom?
A man cave? The possibilities are endless, limited only
by your imagination. My heavens, John Ettline could
have held dances up here!
Toni, on behalf of Dell rats
everywhere I want to thank
you and your family for all
the time you have spent and
all the work you have done to
preserve, restore, renovate,
beautify and photograph the
old and the new Shady Dell!
If you would like to follow the Dell's transformation from the very beginning you can click the links below and read parts
1 through 5 of Toni's Pimp My Dell series:
Pimp My Dell #1
Pimp My Dell #2
Pimp My Dell #3
Pimp My Dell #4
Pimp My Dell #5
Have a Shady day!